In the year 2139, the Earth has changed into a virtually uninhabitable place called the Cursed Earth. All of the Earth's population have crowded into the cities across the planet, now known as Mega-Cities. The crimes in these Mega-Cities became so violent and so powerful, that the regular justice system was powerless to contain, then it collapsed completely. However, a new justice system came from the ashes, there were three justice systems in one (police, jury and executioner), they were called Judges. In Mega-City One (formerly, New York City), there was a Judge, named Joseph Dredd, who was the toughest and most stringent Judge in history. One day, he was charged with murder, and was tried and sentenced to life in prison because of it. Written by
When Hershey asks Central to analyse an old photo of Dredd with Rico at the academy, Central gives the description "Unknown male, approximately 200 centimetres tall". 200 cm is nearly 6 feet 7 inches, Armand Assante (who plays Rico) is nowhere near this unusually tall height, his height is less than 6 foot. See more »
In the third millennium, the world changed. Climate, nations, all were in upheaval. The Earth transformed into a poisonous, scorched desert, known as "The Cursed Earth". Millions of people crowded into a few Megacities, where roving bands of street savages created violence the justice system could not control. Law, as we know it, collapsed. From the decay rose a new order, a society ruled by a new, elite force. A force with the power to dispense both justice and punishment. They ...
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Standard blockbuster fare for people who like things that go bang but not much more than that
In the future the world has been scorched and is uninhabitable. The cities are overflowing and cramped. Violence and crime has gotten to the stages that the courts and juries of the past were unable to cope. The Judges were planned to be police, judge and executioners the ultimate law keepers. The strictest of these is Judge Dredd. However Dredd's history is revealed when his long-forgotten genetic twin escapes from captivity and kills high ranking council members. The DNA evidence points to Dredd and he is sentenced accordingly. However he escapes with hacker Fergie and returns to the city to try and stop Rico's plan for his own laws.
It's been a few years since I saw this in the cinema and I thought I'd give it another go. However I had only average memories of it memories that were pretty close to the mark now that I've seen it again. The film starts reasonably well and has a good little bit of humour in it the recycling bot that says `recycle waste for food, it's good for the environment and OK for you!' is my favourite! However any nice touches like this and any debate on the nature of the Judges is quickly lost in a by-the-numbers blockbuster.
The action is OK but not great and the film doesn't manage to ever really have a genuine sense of excitement or tension. Director Cannon is much better at style than substance and here he proves that again. The cartoon violence will be OK for teenagers but is too basic and undemanding for many I think. The cityscapes are quite good but a tad OTT. Bladerunner got it pitch perfect all those years ago and every film since has tried to up the ante unnecessarily.
Stallone is a pretty good choice for Dredd because of his strong chin. I didn't care less if he removed his helmet or not, but his constant speaking in catchphrases did annoy me a bit. Oh and I've heard a life time of `law' and `court' puns and kiss-off lines. Schneider is a misjudged comedy sidekick, he isn't used well and just gets in the way. The film would have been better without his `relief' and gone darker. Assante is a strong villain and the council is full of famous faces. Lane has nothing to do as Judge Hershey.
Overall this is a cartoon for teenagers and those just looking for lots of bangs. However, even for that crowd this may prove a little basic I wanted it to be more sophisticated than it was and be darker (but not just violent as it has been misinterpreted as here). Maybe worth a watch with a beer and pizza but the fact that we haven't been treated to a JD2 speaks volumes.
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